Wednesday, November 22, 2006

On the Existence of Señor Claus

Inspired by Afrindie Mum

I may have mentioned before that I was a cynical little girl. And if not cynical, then most certainly rational. I am told (with no small degree of pride, by my emminently rational mother) that there was only one year in which I believed in Santa- the year I was two and a half. My mother, not wanting to embrace her inner party-pooper quite so completely at such a tender age, responded to my enthusiastic tales of the exploits of Mr. & Mrs. Claus with an interested "Oh really?" Under the Christmas tree that year, there were presents from my family, and extra special, unmarked presents, which, I reasoned, could have only come from the Jolly Olde Elf himself. "You think so?" quieried my mother.

And so it came to pass that, the following Christmas, I asked if there was a Santa Claus, and my mother, who cannot tell a lie, said that there wasn't. And after that, as described previously, I went on a mission to disabuse my peers of the ridiculous notion that there was an elderly obese gentlemen pulled by an octet of levitating reindeer, who slid effortlessly down all the chimneys of the world (and presumably, broke into the chimneyless houses). *

And yet? And yet... I can't bring myself to raise an entirely rational son. Not just yet. But I also can't bear to deceive him, so I pepper my tales of Santa with "the story goes..." and "that's what they say..." Because somehow, it's more honest that way. Because really, the story of Santa Claus is a legend (designed to incite one's offspring to be good, as with most legends), and it is best told that way. That way, it can be both understood to be truthful, and fanciful. And those are two values which I hope, with equal fervour, that I can instill.

* Come to think of it, the whole sliding in and out of a long dark canal thing is a rather lurid metaphor for the under 12 set, don't you think? And oh-so-phallocentric.

1 comment:

Poor_Statue said...

Love this description and the reasoning behind your current stance.